Tuesday, 22 January 2019

MPOV: Aunty Lee's Delights (Singaporean Mystery #1)

My rating: 3/5
Goodreads rating: 3.44/5
Reading Women Challenge 2019: 1) A mystery or thriller written by a woman of colour

Author: Ovidia Yu
Genre: Mystery fiction
First published: September 2013

Aunty Lee's Delights is the first book in the Singaporean Mystery series by Ovidia Yu. It's about Rosie Lee, a widow, who owns a successful restaurant serving local cuisines aptly named Aunty Lee's Delights. A woman has been found murdered on Sentosa Island and it has piqued Rosie's interest especially when the murderer is still at large. Together with her maid Nina, Rosie helped the police unravelled the truth with her unique recipe way catching the murderer in the end.

Initially it was written with much guarded, perfected, on the dot of the English language making it quite dull. As the story progresses, when the plot begins to thicken, the perfect pace naturally loosens which made it a more bearable read. Ovidia's prose may not be as entertaining but she managed to get her story across in an enthralling way.

It is my first Singapore read but I couldn't helped compare this to Miss Marple. I've recently read Agatha Christie's A Murder at the Vicarage and the similarity between Aunty Lee and Miss Marple were quite obvious. Both were elderly women, both enjoyed being detectives, both quite observant so I wonder if Ovidia had gotten her inspiration from Miss Marple. Thankfully the solving methods were different so it's quite refreshing when Aunty Lee had it down in recipe format.

I must say, I am surprised by the enjoyment factor, though not a wow read but a good one nevertheless. Not forgetting it's so relatable since it's Asian and I could easily imagined it while reading. With the many interesting plots which I'll not be a spoiler here, I'm glad to have discovered this Asian author and if it's not for the Reading Women Challenge 2019, I wouldn't have picked this book up.

Moving on to the next challenge:
2. A book about a woman with a mental illness

Unfortunately, I've read Alice Sebold's Lucky, listed as one of many in this category. After some searches, I've finally settled on Before I Go To Sleep by S.J. Watson. I've not watched the movie yet, though it has my favourite Nicole Kidman, so hoping it's a good one.

To end this, some notable quotes from Aunty Lee's Delights:
Frank Cunningham nodded. He knew the type. "I'm okay with women dressing to please themselves. That said, some girls today forget there is also the need ti dress appropriately because of how others will see you. Otherwise they'll just attract sex predators and perverts."

Aunty Lee thought Carla Saito and Marianne Peters would very likely have married - and had a happy marriage - if they could have done so. Things were changing. They just had not changed fast enough for Marianne Peters. That, however, was not the issue inside Nina's head. But what went on between Marianne and Carla was no more Nina's business than Nina's beliefs were Aunty Lee's. She has heard Nina's attitude before, though expressed by other people and directed at other targets. The 'desperate decency if the respectable poor' held true at all levels.

"I believe God gave us brains and logic because He wanted us to learn to use them." Aunty Lee smiled.

"Pig's foot," Aunty Lee said sweetly. "You want to know what human beings taste like, all you have to do is eat pork." She lifted a chopper and expertly whacked the long, pale-skinned leg. "Very sweet. You and the pig are both red meat. Your muscles about the same size. You eat your junk food, the pig eats what is left over from making your junk food, so same taste, same texture, only difference is your meat is juicier."

As Aunty Lee always said, you can't cut out bad memories without removing part of your heart, but you can always create good memories to override them.

Friday, 11 January 2019

CSM: Nyc Nat Nook closed for the weekend

It is that time of the month where we balik kampung aka go back hometown to visit our children :-) As such, we are closed this weekend so see you on Monday! Thank you.

xoxo.

PS: If there is anything urgent, please send us a message ya!

Thursday, 10 January 2019

MPOV: The Murder at the Vicarage (Miss Marple #1)

My rating: 4/5
Goodreads rating: 4.05/5
First published: October 1930
Author: Agatha Christie
Genre: Crime fiction

Murder at the Vicarage marks the debut of Agatha Christie’s unflappable and much beloved female detective, Miss Jane Marple. With her gift for sniffing out the malevolent side of human nature, Miss Marple is led on her first case to a crime scene at the local vicarage. Colonel Protheroe, the magistrate whom everyone in town hates, has been shot through the head. No one heard the shot. There are no leads. Yet, everyone surrounding the vicarage seems to have a reason to want the Colonel dead. It is a race against the clock as Miss Marple sets out on the twisted trail of the mysterious killer without so much as a bit of help from the local police.

The above taken from Goodreads.

My first read of the year and Miss Marple it is! It has been entertaining thus far. Truly a remarkable story with the typical Agatha Christie's style and a twist towards the end. Expect the unexpected, yet it's there right in front of us. I liked how Christie presented the murderer on a silver platter, so to speak LOL!

Though it's narrated by the Vicar, Miss Marple slowly inched into their lives, solving the murder mystery in the end. A nice way to intro the protagonist and yet she's not the main character, only observed by a third party. It's such an interesting approach.

I'm just glad that though it was written in the 60's, the prose and plot are still relatable and easily understood. Unlike some other classics, this turned out to be a good read.

There were some repetition of this phrase 'Peculiar Thing' so it got me wondering if Ransom Riggs had his inspiration after this book...

Ending this review with a notable quote:
"The young people think the old people are fools... but the old people know the young people are fools."

Tuesday, 8 January 2019

Nyc Nat Nook: Books for rent online!

Did you know that you can rent books from Nyc Nat Nook via online?

Yes, you can and we will post the books to you! Of course, you would have to pay for postage lah!

We understand that some people find it a hassle to travel all the way to Damansara Jaya with the heavy traffic plus it's difficult to find parking at times...

Now you can do it in the comfort of your own home, choosing and renting books via online... well, online shopping is the trend nowadays anyway. 

So instead of paying for petrol, toll and parking which could be more, just add another RM6 for postage for 2 books or less. Once you have finished reading the books, you can walk-in to return or you can opt to post it back to us. Less hassle right?!

You can view the list of books available here:

You can also email to us with your wishlist or any questions you have in mind:
nycnatnook@gmail.com
Why buy when you can rent? In line with the minimalist way, less is more so renting will reduce the clutter while you can still read more, gathering more knowledge!

Saturday, 5 January 2019

Reading Women Challenge 2019

After numerous failed attempts at reading challenges previously, I must say I am a little perplexed to try this one by Reading Women. After giving it some thoughts, I guess there's no harm in trying since their list is with 24 challenges and I've actually set my Goodreads reading goal at 38 books! As I have a mountain of books at Nyc Nat Nook, I'm always at a lost on what to read next. So this challenge can definitely help me select my next book to read easily :-)

So, the first challenge on the list is:
1. A mystery or thriller written by a woman of colour

I've decided to read Ovidia Yu's Aunty Lee's Delights (Singaporean Mystery #1) once I've finished Agatha Christie's A Murder at the Vicarage. Sounds like I'm on a roll for mystery and crime LOL!!! I do pledged to update the list accordingly in order to ensure I'll complete the challenge. So *fingers crossed*

Anyway, you can read the full details of the challenge here:
https://www.readingwomenpodcast.com/reading-women-challenge-2019/

Wednesday, 2 January 2019

Goodreads: My Year 2018 in Books

A very Happy New Year ya all!!!

A new year, a new challenge! I've been ahead of my reading goal on average until October when my reading has slowed due to busy schedules. So in the end, I was short of 3 to achieve my reading challenge. Overall 2018 was filled with eclectic titles and new authors which I normally would have skipped if not for KLBAC! I'm very happy about the outcome and I do hope the best for 2019! So here's the list of books I've read in 2018...





I've decided to stick to 38 books this year, hoping I'll achieve the challenge this time *fingers crossed*

Monday, 31 December 2018

MPOV: A Dog for Christmas

My rating: 3/5
Goodreads rating: 4.02/5
First published: 2013
Author: W. Bruce Cameron
Genre: Domestic fiction

From W. Bruce Cameron, the author of the New York Times and USA Today bestselling novel A Dog's Purpose, which is now a major motion picture!

While nursing a broken heart, Josh Michaels is outraged when a neighbor abandons his very pregnant dog, Lucy, at Josh's Colorado home. But Josh can't resist Lucy's soulful brown eyes, and though he's never had a dog before, he's determined to do the best he can for Lucy—and her soon-to-arrive, bound-to-be-adorable puppies.

Soon in over his head, Josh calls the local animal shelter for help, and meets Kerri, a beautiful woman with a quick wit and a fierce love for animals. As Kerri teaches Josh how to care for Lucy's tiny puppies and gets them ready to be adopted through the shelter's "Dogs of Christmas" program, Josh surprises himself by falling for her.

But he's fallen even harder for his new furry family, which has brought incredible joy into Josh's life. He barely has time to sit down, between chasing after adventurous Sophie and brave Oliver, but when he does, his lap is quickly filled by the affectionate Lola. And Rufus and Cody's strong bond makes Josh wonder about his own relationships with his family.

With Christmas and the adoption date looming, Josh finds himself wondering if he can separate himself from his beloved puppies. At odds with Kerri, Josh isn't willing to lose her, but doesn't know how to set things right. Can a surprise litter of Christmas puppies really change one man's life?

W. Bruce Cameron's The Dogs of Christmas is a charming and heartwarming holiday tale that explores the power of love, trust, and a basket full of puppies.

The above taken from Goodreads.

I noticed the title is different on Goodreads. I have A Dog for Christmas but it's titled as The Dogs of Christmas online. I wonder why...

Anyway, the book itself was totally an easy read and kinda slow at times. First half of the book basically focused on Josh trying to make things work and comfy for Lucy and the puppies. Even his date with Kerri didn't work out exactly as planned and he didn't continue pursuing her. It's like his life is out of focus, he's too comfortable at where he is and not willing to change things. How dense can he be?

Midway onward was a little more dramatic though it could have been better but I guess if without the drama then the story itself would be kinda monotonous. All in all, it's definitely a light Christmas read, great for the festivity and, in fact, a suitable gift for someone who loves dogs!

Finally finished this just before the New Year!!!

Friday, 28 December 2018

MPOV: EliteSoft Wallet power bank and Speedy data cable

All thanks to Pokemon Go, my mobile phone's battery depletes very fast so I rely on power bank a lot. It's one of those 'must have' items in my handbag LOL! As such, I prefer a reliable power bank as most in the market is not plus the life span is short.
EliteSoft Wallet 10,000 mAh Power Bank with Speedy 2.4A Cable
So here comes EliteSoft, an unknown brand to me, with a lightweight power bank which works as hard. I wasn't sure at first since it's made in China plus it is light for a 10,000 mAh! Who would have thought that this small fella is hardy and works really well, even with 2 phones charging at the same time!

It has dual output i.e. 1A and 2A, not fast charging but works equally as fast for a 10,000 mAh! Ultra slim with 25% thinner and lighter than most similar capacity power banks! Coupled it with a Speedy 2.4A data cable, my mobile phone is fully charged within a few hours! Okay, I screw up here as I forgot to time the charging but I think it usually takes 3 to 4 hours to fully charge my mobile phone.

I honestly liked this bundle a lot and it has been my constant companion in my handbag ever since I was given this set to try. So much so that I've stocked it up to sell at Nyc Nat Nook *shameless plug* Well, sharing is caring mah... you can hardly find a lightweight power bank with a leather wrapped data cable which look aesthetically neat and classy ya...

If you are interested, you can look them up here:
https://www.facebook.com/NycNatNook/

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